Editor rating: 3.5/5
Let the magic of outer space inspire your child at a young age! The Discovery Kids planetarium projector is the ultimate educational toy. It's fun and awe-inspiring, instilling a love of the cosmos into your child. However, it's also a valuable teaching tool. With images of real-life galaxies and celestial objects, it can show your young one of all the possibilities that come with dedication to astronomy.
In this review, we're going to take a look at what this planetarium-style galaxy lamp has to offer. We'll give you the low-down of its features and capabilities so that you can decide if it's the right choice for you and your child.
Rotating star plane
Disc-based film projections
It comes with 24 images on three discs
Built-in focus lens
It uses 3 AA batteries
About 5 inches long, 4 inches wide, and 10 inches tall
Roughly 1.76 pounds
This projector from Discovery Kids is a STEM-focused toy that's designed to enrich your youngster's mind. That said, it's not for everyone. It serves a specific niche market and lacks the universal performance features that some galaxy fanatics might be seeking. Here are some of the most important aspects to consider as you decide if it's worth buying.
Ease Of Use
Discovery Kids caters to, well, kids! As a result, their toys are all easy enough for young minds to understand. This planetarium projector is no different.
The control scheme is rudimentary, but that's its strongest suit. There's no complex control panel or overly confusing buttons. All your kid has to deal with is a single switch. Flip the switch to the left to view the planetarium stars. Flip it to the right to view the picture slides. To turn it off, move the switch to the middle position. It's that easy!
Now, simplicity does limit your control options. But we'll get into that later. From a usability standpoint, the projector is one of the easiest to understand on the market.
Features of The Discovery Kids Planetarium
This device is a bit different from other projectors. It doesn't have a ton of fancy bells and whistles.
Discovery Kids designed this light to serve two purposes. On one end, you'll find a rounded plastic dome. This is where the star planetarium system is hiding. When you turn the light on, stars will splash across your walls and ceiling.
The dome-shaped planetarium is very effective at creating an immersive show. It offers a wide coverage area and can make a cool effect to enjoy throughout the room.
On the opposite side, the device uses a standard projector system. Think of it as a projector machine in a movie theater! The light shines through a tiny piece of film, magnifying the image and shooting it on the wall.
Discovery Kids utilizes film discs. Each disc comes with eight images. Simply insert the discs into the slot and cycle through the pictures to enjoy them!
The Discovery Kids planetarium projector's performance is what you would expect out of a child's toy. It's enough to captivate young minds and keep them entertained. But to an adult, it's not exactly high quality.
The lights aren't powerful on this unit. They're relatively weak, creating a dim shadow that may be hard to see. For the best results, your child needs to use the toy in a pitch-black room. Otherwise, images look washed out.
There is a focus knob, which is a big plus. The knob helps you fine-tune the image and improve clarity. But of course, it's limited. The focus knob isn't going to make the pictures super-clear all of a sudden. You have to create a dark environment and get the positioning just right to make much of a difference.
What's In The Box?
We have to say: Discovery Kids knocked it out of the park with the packaging.
At the end of the day, this device is a toy. No child is going to want to use a toy unless the packaging excites them! Discovery Kids uses a colorful box that puts the projector on full display. It highlights the beauty this device can create and the whimsical fun your child can have.
It might not seem like much, but the packaging makes a world of difference. This is especially true if you plan on gifting it! With the beautifully designed box, any young astronomer will love to receive this projector.
Inside the box, you'll find the projector itself housed inside some protective cardboard. It also has some literature and three image discs.
It does not come with a power source. The planetarium projector uses three AA batteries, which you have to buy separately. While the extra purchase is a little annoying, we do like the fact that the battery power makes the projector portable.
Controls & Functionality
Don't expect much functionality or versatile controls out of this projector. As mentioned earlier, there is only a single switch. That's all you have to make adjustments with!
This system is lacking some core features that are standard in the projector market. Things like adjustable brightness, changeable light colors, and a built-in timer are all missing.
The absence of those features is a bit disappointing. But, you have to remember that this is a kid's toy. Simplicity and usability were the priority, so Discovery Kids left out anything that could make the device overly complicated.
Believe it or not, the Discovery Kids planetarium projector is quite durable for a toy. It's made of plastic through and through. Everything from the stand to the lens is plastic. However, the material is relatively durable and can hold up well to the light falls and tumbles kids may subject it to.
Now, it's not going to win any durability awards or hold up well to outdoor use. This is an indoor-only projector. With regular use, it should hold up well.
The design of the projector deserves a special shoutout, too. Discovery Kids made this model look like a satellite or space thruster. It has all the hallmarks of a NASA-inspired design. The stand even looks like the scaffolding you see on a real-life rocket launch!
It's not much, but the attention to detail is outstanding here. It pushes the STEM-focused nature of this toy even further.
Customer Service & Guarantee
Discovery Kids is a long-established brand that continues to make fantastic products for kids. Customer service doesn't disappoint. On the official website, you can find contact information to help you get in touch with the support team. There's a dedicated email address and a live telephone number. You can also find all of Discovery Kids' social media links, which they're quite active on.
The brand also offers a generous limited warranty. The warranty length depends on the product, but it covers many different manufacturer defects. Discovery Kids also has a standard 30-day return policy.
Discovery Kids Planetarium Projector Review
There's good and bad with most star projectors. It's important to cover all bases and display the facts both positive and negative.
Overall, the Discovery Kids planetarium projector is a hit with its core demographic. Kids will enjoy the toy and have no problem learning from it.
But, there's no denying that this device has its limitations. It's not very bright and lacks many core features we would expect from even a child's projector. Young kids will find a lot to love about this model, but if you want a projector that goes beyond child's play, you may be better off with a more feature-rich option.